"The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing."


Glenn Reynolds:

Barack Obama:
"Impossible to transcend."

Albert A. Gore, Jr.:
"An incontinent brute."

Rev. Jeremiah Wright:
"God damn the Gentleman Farmer."

Friends of GF's Sons:
"Is that really your dad?"

Kickball Girl:
"Keeping 'em alive until 7:45."

Hired Hand:
"I think . . . we forgot the pheasant."

I'm an
Alcoholic Yeti
in the
TTLB Ecosystem

Friday, June 29, 2007

And It's Not Going to Get Any Better

John Podhoretz, at NRO:
I watched half of last night's Democratic debate, and like Jim Geraghty, I tried hard to evaluate it without reference to my own ideological blinders. It struck me as a snake-oil salesman's convention. Every minute there was another promise to fix another problem that any sensible person at any point on the political spectrum knows perfectly well can't simply be fixed by dollars alone — universal health care, education, the size of the prison population, AIDS, early childhood development, and on and on. I suppose there are many people in this country who genuinely believe the reason things aren't better is that government doesn't do enough or spend enough and that all you need to do is cut the defense budget to make everything equal. And I suppose saying you're for massive government action in all these areas is incredibly seductive for those people to hear. But it's not serious. In fact, it's insulting to their audiences for the candidates to pretend it is serious. It would be like Republican candidates going before pro-life audiences and saying, "When I am president there will be no abortions in this country!"


Thursday, June 28, 2007

Squirrel: Impossible

Tahoe On Fire

As you may know, the forests around Lake Tahoe, on the border of California and Nevada, have been on fire for several days now. The good folks at SFist are reminded of a fire in that very area, chronicled (read: 'exaggerated') and possibly even started by Mark Twain:
Within half an hour all before us was a tossing, blinding tempest of flame! It went surging up adjacent ridges—surmounted them and disappeared in the canons beyond—burst into view upon higher and farther ridges, presently—shed a grander illumination abroad, and dove again—flamed out again, directly, higher and still higher up the mountain-side- -threw out skirmishing parties of fire here and there, and sent them trailing their crimson spirals away among remote ramparts and ribs and gorges, till as far as the eye could reach the lofty mountain-fronts were webbed as it were with a tangled network of red lava streams. Away across the water the crags and domes were lit with a ruddy glare, and the firmament above was a reflected hell!

Every feature of the spectacle was repeated in the glowing mirror of the lake! Both pictures were sublime, both were beautiful; but that in the lake had a bewildering richness about it that enchanted the eye and held it with the stronger fascination.

We sat absorbed and motionless through four long hours. We never thought of supper, and never felt fatigue. But at eleven o'clock the conflagration had traveled beyond our range of vision, and then darkness stole down upon the landscape again.
Fuller excerpt at SFist. A friend of the Hired Hand is a crew member of the only ship ('helicopter,' for you Philistines) in the entire National Forest Service arsenal that is licensed to do "free drops" (aka sliding down a rope, unharnessed) onto the forest floor. Wishing him the best of luck.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Edwards for President, R.I.P.

That didn't take long.

One of the Seven Warning Signs of terminal campaign desperation: Having your wife "spontaneously" plead with Ann Coulter to "stop the personal attacks" on well-coiffed Johnny.

Can't we all just get along?

Just to show that there's no hard feelings, here's how a real politician works this angle.


Dramatic Chipmunk

The best 5-second video in this universe:

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Next time, just use salve

"Dear Abby: I recently had surgery to correct a defect in my urethra. The medical term for it is "hypospadias." I let my co-workers know in an e-mail and provided a link to answer any questions they might have. The link had a photo . . . ."

This is so very disturbing in so many ways, and Miss Julie touches all the bases.


A Pig is an animal who's . . . .

Jill Stanek observes: "A man exploiting a woman in a bar to be his unpaid hooker is a pig with or without a condom in his pocket."

Here's the ad:

I guess I'm just old-fashioned. You mean there are bars now where all you have to do to get laid is drop a quarter in a slot? Damn. You've pretty much got your March of Western Civilization summed up right there.

Via Dawn Eden, who wonders: "What, exactly, distinguishes a man or woman who has casual sex with someone for recreation, from one who does so for money?"

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We're Confused

Male inmate? Check. Female inmate? Check. Hole in cell wall? Check.

What we don't understand is the whole pancake batter, toothpaste thing.
You figure it out.


This is Your Cornfield on Cocaine

Story HERE.


Paris Hilton

Your host has been asked to post his thoughts on the occasion of Ms. Hilton's release from jail.


Monday, June 25, 2007

Where is the Gentleman Farmer?

Click map to enlarge. More at Strange Maps.


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

June 12, 1987

At the Berlin Wall, by the Brandenburg Gate:

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Monday, June 11, 2007

The Final Episode

Matt Zoller Seitz: "It was the perfect ending. No ending at all. Write your own goddamn ending."


Small Dead Animals adds:
How do you end the greatest show in the history of television?

You don't. Or rather, you can't...

After my initial anger and dismay at the ending last night, I came to the realization that this is the only way you could have ended the series. There was no other way.

Any other ending would have degraded the series.

David Chase is absolutely brilliant.

Chase has made this series great by changing our expectations; expectations that have been formed by years of watching 90 minute movies and 60 minute television programs in which the plot conflict appears early and is fully satisfied by the end of the program.

But real life isn't like that. In real life, Red doesn't always walk up the beach to see Andy sanding a boat in Mexico. Sometimes important issues in our lives just don't get resolved.

Furio just doesn't come back. The Russian could be either dead or back in Moscow. Syl may or may not make it. We just won't ever know.

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Largest island in a lake on an island in a lake on an island

Vulcan point in Crater Lake on Vulcano Island in Lake Taal on Luzon. More HERE.


Moon Base Alpha

"Every dog owner has the same moment of rue when you buy a new sack of feed: well, this isn’t the first time I’ll pick this up. I’m still amazed at the dog’s ability to excrete a quantity almost identical to the amount he’s fed. It’s almost as if they don’t need food at all, but survive like an air fern. Maybe the dog chow’s just dessert. Then again, he had dessert tonight. He found cookies in a bag wife and child took to the pool. The cookies are no more. There were many cookies. And he gave me a peevish bark later because he didn't get steak. If the moon was made of food and dogs could smell it, they'd have had bases up there years ago."



Don't You Feel Better Now?

“Just knowing that rich, famous, beautiful people can be miserable, pathetic losers gives me hope that my own troubled existence may have meaning. I can’t get enough of this story on TV. Every moment is like a multivitamin for my ego.”

More HERE.


Saturday, June 09, 2007

A Picture's Worth

During the Vietnam War, Huỳnh Công Út worked as a photographer for the Associated Press.

On June 8, 1972, Mr. Ut took this photograph of Kim Phuc Phan Thi, fleeing from her village near Trang Bang, Vietnam, after it had been napalmed by the South Vietnamese air force. It earned him the Pulitzer Prize:

Mr. Ut is still a photographer for the Associated Press. Yesterday, also June 8, exactly 35 years after his most famous work, he snapped this timeless pic of Paris Hilton fleeing the Los Angeles County Superior Court:

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Friday, June 08, 2007

Coming Soon to a T-Shirt Near You

Available now, and in other attractive styles, HERE.


On Leering

Ace opines:
Weird. Feminists continue insisting that it's empowering to fuck everything that moves, except your actual husband, who must be sexually punished as a state-sanctioned enforcer of The Oppressive Patriarchy.

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Thursday, June 07, 2007

New Medical Research Explains Déjà Vu

Scientists have pinpointed the particular part of the brain responsible for that creepy feeling that we've seen or done something before, when we know we couldn't have.

Story HERE.


New Medical Research Explains Déjà Vu

Scientists have pinpointed the particular part of the brain responsible for that creepy feeling that we've seen or done something before, when we know we couldn't have.

Story HERE.

Hey . . . wait a minute!


Public Service Announcement

Top Ten Warning Signs Your Daughter Is A No Talent Publicity Seeking Drunken Douche-Bag.

H/T to Ms. Shaidle.


Defeat’s Killing Fields

This somehow got past the censor and appeared on the op-ed page of today's New York Times:
Some opponents of the Iraq war are toying with the idea of American defeat. A number of them are simply predicting it, while others advocate measures that would make it more likely. Lending intellectual respectability to all this is an argument that takes a strange comfort from the outcome of the Vietnam War. The defeat of the American enterprise in Indochina, it is said, turned out not to be as bad as expected. The United States recovered, and no lasting price was paid.


The 1975 Communist victory in Indochina led to horrors that engulfed the region. The victorious Khmer Rouge killed one to two million of their fellow Cambodians in a genocidal, ideological rampage. In Vietnam and Laos, cruel gulags and “re-education” camps enforced repression. Millions of people fled, mostly by boat, with thousands dying in the attempt.

The defeat had a lasting and significant strategic impact. Leonid Brezhnev trumpeted that the global “correlation of forces” had shifted in favor of “socialism,” and the Soviets went on a geopolitical offensive in the third world for a decade. Their invasion of Afghanistan was one result. Demoralized European leaders publicly lamented Soviet aggressiveness and American paralysis.


Today, in Iraq, there should be no illusion that defeat would come at an acceptable price. George Orwell wrote that the quickest way of ending a war is to lose it. But anyone who thinks an American defeat in Iraq will bring a merciful end to this conflict is deluded. Defeat would produce an explosion of euphoria among all the forces of Islamist extremism, throwing the entire Middle East into even greater upheaval. The likely human and strategic costs are appalling to contemplate. Perhaps that is why so much of the current debate seeks to ignore these consequences.

As in Indochina more than 30 years ago, millions of Iraqis today see the United States helping them defeat their murderous opponents as the only hope for their country. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have committed themselves to working with us and with their democratically elected government to enable their country to rejoin the world as a peaceful, moderate state that is a partner to its neighbors instead of a threat. If we accept defeat, these Iraqis will be at terrible risk. Thousands upon thousands of them will flee, as so many Vietnamese did after 1975.


When government officials argued that American credibility was at stake in Indochina, critics ridiculed the notion. But when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait in 1990, he and his colleagues invoked Vietnam as a reason not to take American warnings seriously. The United States cannot be strong against Iran — or anywhere — if we accept defeat in Iraq.
Read the whole thing.

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Cat Had Kittens

When I was rather younger, everything oddly wrong was blamed on the Atom Bomb. Violent thunder storm? Atom Bomb. Cow went dry? Atom Bomb. Bad crop? Atom bomb. I recall an issue of Mad Magazine that recited a litany of such nonsense, the punch line being, “Cat had kittens? Atom bomb!”

Comes now Pets Across America, which describes itself as being “the largest pet adoption community in the United States, serving 125 million people in the top U.S. markets.” They report an enormous increase in the number of stray cats being brought into their shelters. And they are quite certain of the cause.

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Monday, June 04, 2007

Because Christianity is Embarrassing

Even those of us who are Christians may be excused if we’ve failed to follow the ins and outs of the current unpleasantness in the Anglican Communion. We've watched this movie before. Another mainline denomination – albeit one with way cool buildings and ass-kicking costumes – discovers sexual deviance, the poor, the sick, and the less fortunate, and decides that it would be terribly relevant to become a social welfare organization, with an emphasis on the latest in group victimization causes. Thus, the Episcopal Church, instead of preaching Christ crucified, decided to be with-it and thoroughly modern. And what better way to demonstrate that than to consecrate an active, practicing homosexual as a bishop?

Take that, all you homophobic Ku-Kluxers! (The days of hooded Nightriders with torches, shotguns and nooses having now wholly passed, it’s safe for the ladies and gentlemen to add their voices to the chorus. No muss, no fuss, and we all feel so terribly revolutionary! Oh the tingle!)

Of course, the worldwide Anglican Communion is no longer your great-grandfather’s Church of England, bunky. It is now, in fact, dominated by vibrant, growing churches in Africa and Asia. And many of those folks haven’t come to Christ at this late date in order to be side-tracked into the rich Western white-man’s worldly cause du jour.

If you’re at all interested in following this conflict, you could do worse than to cruise by the Midwest Conservative Journal, or Captain Yips Secret Journal. The latter recently included this hilarious perspective:
[The American Episcopal Church] is the Anglican Communion’s crazy Aunt Melinda, the aging hippy who comes to family reunions in a floaty tie-dyed mumu, carrying an immense, daisy-appliqued straw handbag. In that bag she has a ziploc of grass and a S & W Model 10 (“for when the pigs come for me”), asks everyone if they want a toke, and then talks loudly about her sex life in explicit detail. Melinda, though, is rich with money left by generations, and money has bought her tolerance - up to a point. Recently, some members of the family have wondered if she’s past it, have begun refusing to come to parties and events if she shows up, and some are even muttering that maybe Melinda needs a trustee.
Just so.

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Oxy-Clinton -- Approved for Symptomatic Relief From Hillary Ambivalence Syndrome

Hat Tip to Uncle Michael.